Ahhh those summer days! For us they were the best days of the year. Rolling around in the sand, endless wave play, ice-cream on tap, beach hair don’t care looks. If you threw around the word Sun Safety, we would be like – yeah, yeah, yeah. We were more concerned about getting a sun-kissed glow than facing the facts of what too much sun exposure would do to our skin. Smart? Not really…
Older and wiser now (we hope, we think!) we want to raise our kids with a better understanding of Sun Safety. Whether you are a sun worshipper or sun dreader, here is what you need to know.
The Good – The Bad – The Ugly
I want you guys to stick with me here, so I’ll start with the good! We need the SUN – period. There are many, many reasons of why I can list here but let’s stay on topic. When your skin is exposed to sunlight your body will manufacture Vitamin D. This vitamin helps our bodies absorb calcium for healthy bones and can be uplifting our moods. BUT (yes, you knew this was coming) just in SMALL doses. Other factors on how much sunlight is needed depend on things such as skin type and where you are living to name a few.
So now the bad and the ugly. Sunlight contains rays of invisible ultraviolet radiation (UVA & UVB). Essentially too much of these rays lead to sunburn, our skin ageing and wrinkling. Most importantly they could contribute to skin cancer. Skin cancer is the 4th most commonly diagnosed cancer in Australia, a scary fact I know! According to research, some forms of skin cancer diagnosed later in life were usually the result of sun exposure from childhood. The truth is that unlike some other forms of cancers the majority of these cases could have been prevented by simply being more sun safe.
So, we’ve got the memo that a small dose of sunshine is a big plus, but how do we protect ourselves and our children from too much sun exposure? Let’s start with clothing and sunscreen. Both give us sun protection with either an SPF or UPF coverage, but with very different strategies.
What is this SPF & UPF business?
SPF (Sun Protection Factor). We all know it and have used it A LOT. It can be found in sunscreen and measures the effectiveness of sunscreen and how well it will protect skin from UV rays (those rays that cause sunburn, speed up ageing and can contribute to cancer - Yes, those lovely rays!) It tests the amount of time for sun-exposed skin to redden. Also read our blog about conventional vs mineral sunscreens.
UPF (Ultraviolet protection factor) measures the effectiveness of sun protective fabrics, fundamentally measuring how much the sun’s UV radiation will penetrate the fabric and reach the skin. Thanks to our UPF50+ kid’s swimwear here at NED we feel super comfortable that our little adventurers are sufficiently protected from the harmful UV rays. The UPF50+ fabric provides 98% coverage for your kid’s skin. And an added bonus, unlike sunscreen there is no need to set the alarm to go run around and re-apply! Yes, we are here to make your life easier… you’re welcome.
Be Sun Smart
Most of us tend to love the sun! Over at NED, our solemn aim is to get kids to play outdoors again while getting our shot of vitamin D. We just have to be sun smart about it.
And it’s easy;
- Wear UPF50+ sun protection clothing like our stylish long-sleeved one-piece suit, perfect for our little girls who love getting up to mischief!
- Wear sunscreen on the exposed areas of the body and re-apply after 2 hours or after coming out of the water. Always use 30+ or higher. We love using Wotnot sunscreen on our kids.
- Use a combination of clothing, shade, sunscreen and hats to offer the best sun safety for your little ones. Giving you peace of mind to enjoy your day as much as the kids! We’ve found our kids love to wear these long sleeve rash guards as they are breathable and quick drying so no chattering teeth when we are packing up to go home!
- Remember prime sizzle time from the sun is between 10 am – 4 pm, go inside or find some shade.
- Finally, don’t forget to go outside and ENJOY it! Take a time out from the screens, for the kids AND for us adults!
Enjoy the rest of summer with your little rays of sunshine!